Given the difficulties of the early part of this season one would have thought that a match report heralding our second win in three games, lifting us from the basement of the league table following a 50 out of a maximum of 60 points haul in three games in which we scored almost three hundred runs would be one overladen with platitudes. But Saturdays win against fellow strugglers Bromley Common left many of its Bickley Park participants feeling unfulfilled.
Much of the preamble was positive. Three debutants; A twelfth turning up at the ground on the off chance we were short following lengthy negotiations in the Mantri household. Sunny winning the toss again viewing the road laid out before us and ten men of Bromley Common, two of whom were u16 and 4 u14! Lets Bat chaps!
Runs came quickly and regularly with little regard for the odd wicket. Debutant Marco Tenten and Simon Davis put on 113 in 15 overs for the first wicket before Marco missed a straight one (he says he gloved it) with 69 to his name in the book. Such was our dominance that the lowest score in our top five was 39!, but note again must go out (to everyone else except the second team) to Mark Hardy, who, even without partner in crime Chris Jacobs managed a very pretty 63 just as the wheels were looking a little wonky.
Still 142 for 2 at drinks became 284 for 6 at the close.
But as each of our defeated warriors left the stage none was satisfied. Each thought they had left runs on the pitch on a day when extra numbered 25! All seemed a little flat in what was turning out to be a remarkably unremarkable innings.
Yes there were a few seven ball overs bowled without the interjection of a wide or no ball, but the main talking point over our sarnies was just how many sixes did Marco hit? He seemed to think it was three and certainly the scorer was puzzled to see a ball seemingly disappear into the woods about 20ft in the air only to signalled as a four by the umpire! It is alleged that two further blows disappeared over the ropes and were signalled so! Anyway, the book says one so there; Anyway, its plain greedy having already been give 69 to claim extras isn’t it?
As we approached the innings close talk turned to maximising our chances of points whilst limiting those of our opponents. A declaration? At 279 for 4 with 38 gone Sunny was almost convinced. Let the kids get us to 300!
284 for 6 after 40 was not quite what was ordered and leaving the field Bromley Common captain was ecstatic to have bettered the 292 scored against them by Catford two weeks earlier.
We could not see how we could loose, but at tea you might also say that the Bromley Common captain was the happiest!
Sohil Chug and debutant Matthew Arman led the attach after tea with well crafted spells. Each caused problem with Sohil Chug returning figures of 3 for 20 off a straight ten. A marathon effort in the still warm evening. Chances were coming and Sohil had obviously taken a dislike to the middle stump he was being asked to bowl at; hitting it three times and breaking it twice, so much so that it had to be replaced! With ten overs gone Bromley Common were 26 for 2, leading to the replacement by one debutant Arman with another. It looked like leg spin to me, but then again, having been dispatched the boundary at the request of Mr Chug (for which I will bare absolutely no bitterness whatsoever until Wednesday night and any later lift home requests!) it was difficult for me to say exactly what he was doing! It was pitching in what looked like the right areas leading to the a top edge and great running back catch for Marco. First catch and first wickets for the club both!
At first drinks Bromley Common were 36 for 3. The Tea time plan of 25 overs to bowl them out, followed by a few beers watching one’s win was working well! The noises from the other pitch however suggested that the second element of the plan seemed to be unravelling and, for the next drink segment so did the first. Sohil’s third wicket and Marco Tenten’s first took Bromley Common to 58 for 5 in the 22nd, but this brought to the crease Amartya Pandey and Bickley Park old boy, Bob Goodwin who kept us at bay for a full fifteen overs before Amartya finally succumbed to the wiles of Anuj for a well earned 41.
If truth be told the middle 10 overs probably involved too many deliveries which required the batsmen only to lift his bat above his head before retaking their guard! Bromley Common were never going for our total and we really had to make them play six (or seven!) deliveries every over and we just fell a bit short.
The interjection of Sunny closed off one end to allow Anuj to swap to the other. The half chances rate rose and the pressure began to build. But we ran out of time with Bromley Common finishing on 152 for 6; Bob Godwin seeing his side to the end and making an unbeaten 40.
As we walked back to the changing room to see we were the last game to finish it felt difficult to celebrate. Yes we had won and the new blood had acquitted itself well, but this result was probably assured about 4 hours earlier. We should just have a shower, take a beer and discuss the strategy for Wickham next week.
Even in that endeavour we were disappointed. And in passing I must say I am amazed at the amount of royal blood running through the third team! With no card machine Sunny finished the day begging for money to pay for tea! Don’t worry though, Bromley Common have promised to let him go before nets on Wednesday!
Roll on Wickham!
|4 August 2018||1:30 pm||1B - Metropolitan 2018||2018|